Mr Patel includes links for two Twitter responses to members of the public. One from @WHO admin (unsigned) and the second from Mr Gregory Hartl, Head of Public Relations/Social Media at WHO. Mr Hartl had responded to a posting of a link to a since closed petition. My Hartl's response needs to be read in the context of the tweet to which he had responded, so although it is useful to have confirmation of a second signed source (from WHO PR/Social Media), it cannot be used as a "stand alone" public statement. If reposting please repost in full, unedited, and with this preamble.

Response: Ref:DE00000844965 - Re: February 25, 2014 Oral Questions, House of Commons, Annette Brooke (Mid Dorset and North Poole) (LD)

Received: March 17, 2014

Dear Mrs Chapman,

Thank you for your recent emails to Jane Ellison and the Department of Health about the classification of chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME). I have been asked to reply. Please accept this as a response to both of your emails.

The Department understands that this issue is a complex and emotive issue, and that it is of concern to many people.

The World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) public statement was made on Twitter, where it stated that ‘Fibromyalgia and ME/CFS are not included as Mental & Behavioural Disorders in ICD-10, [and that] there is no proposal to do so for ICD-11’. The message can be viewed at the following link:

In addition, on 14 February, Mr Gregory Hartl, Head of Public Relations/Social Media at WHO, stated that ‘there is and never was any intention to [reclassify Fibromyalgia and ME/CFS as a Mental and Behavioural Disorder]’. The relevant message, and its context, can be seen at:

Finally, you may wish to participate in the development of the eleventh version of WHO’s International Classification of Diseases (ICD). Information about becoming involved in the revision to the ICD is available on the following page:

I hope this reply is helpful.

Yours sincerely,

Rahul Patel
Ministerial Correspondence and Public Enquiries
Department of Health

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